How Farmingdale State College is Engaging At-Risk Students in Undergraduate Research

Undergraduate Research: Image of Beakers in a Lab
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A pilot project at Farmingdale State College is engaging both freshmen and transfer students in undergraduate research. Here are the details.



The US Department of Education has awarded multi-million dollar "First in the World" grants to 18 colleges and universities that are innovating to solve critical challenges with access, recruitment, retention, and student success. At AI, we have interviewed each of the recipients to learn more about the projects these institutions are pursuing, how their approaches are unique, and what other colleges and universities can learn from these new efforts.

This was the second year of the First in the World grants. You can read our interviews with the 24 institutions that received 2014 grants here.

by Lisa Cook and Daniel Fusch, Academic Impressions

Officials at Farmingdale State College, State University of New York, hope to boost degree completion of at-risk students by engaging them actively in undergraduate research. Their new project, "Creating Research Opportunities for Students," will use their $2.9 million 2015 First in the World grant to mentor and prepare students for research and then offer a hands-on research experience with a faculty mentor, conducted both on- and off-campus. They project that the initiative will increase their four-year graduation rate by 20%.

Familiar with the research on the efficacy of involving students in real-world research projects and fascinated by Farmingdale's approach, we spoke recently with Dr. Beverly Kahn who authored the grant application and is Project Director. Kahn is a professor of political science and former provost and vice president for academic affairs.

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